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Friday, July 31, 2009

the last 3 weeks...

Have been a bit of a blur...

First, I was at Rock River for a week with our middle schoolers!!! Great week.

Second, I was back for a few days before heading out to a great... although somewhat rainy... trip to Cedar Point for a couple of days!!!

Third, I was gone on vacation for week.

Now, I'm back home. And feeling pretty good. But mostly glad to be home!! It is good to be home.

Jim

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Undignified Finale (Friday AM @ RRCC)...

A little sample of worship this past week at Rock River...

Jim

HERE it is...

Home from camp!!

Man...

What a long but enjoyable week at Rock River Christian Camp.

I always enjoy weeks of middle school camp. Several reasons go into this, but the two primary ones are personal ones for me. I gave my life to Christ when I was in middle school and at camp (Round Lake Christian Assembly in Ohio) and I committed my life to fulltime Christian Service at a week of middle school camp (again at Round Lake).

So for me, middle school week of camp is always a reminder of what I do and why I love it (although it can be very frustrating and disheartening at times).

Last week was a great week. Aside from being tired and sleeping on a bunk in my sleeping bag, the week was pretty great. Here are a couple of my favorites for the week:
  • Shooting water balloons with a slingshot during freetime at campers... some aware... but some unaware of their impending doom
  • Watching middle schoolers go crazy (for the Lord) during worship
  • Leading a dorm discussion with nine middle school guys on the topics of homosexuality and sin... only to be followed directly 10 minutes later with 25 dumb blonde jokes and 325 "yo momma" jokes... and that's no joke.
  • Talking with students about their relationship with Christ... some of which go to our church and others of which I may never see again
  • Playing water baseball
  • Taking a nap in the afternoon... and then getting up and going to canteen for candy and soda
  • Seeing 3 students give their lives to Christ and get baptized.
It was a great week of camp. And a great reminder of what youth ministry can be and why I love it so much.

Jim

David Crowder*Band Rockumentary 4: Twitter Will Kill You

Good stuff...

Jim

Check it out HERE

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Headed to camp tomorrow!!


I'm headed to Rock River Christian Camp for a week with seven awesome middle schoolers tomorrow (Kayla, Jeannelle, Mary, Hannah, Will, Alec and Megan).

So there's a good chance that the blogging will be light. I'm not as skilled as some who set their blog up with articles to post while they are AWOL.

So unless I have some pictures to post or something witty to say (which almost never happens) or some free time (yeah right!! I'm at camp!!!), you'll have to catch up with me in a week.

But if you are so inclined, feel free to pray for these students that God would rock their socks off!!!

Jim

Friday, July 10, 2009

United Breaks Guitars - Dave Carroll

This video is pretty great... and on the website there is an explanation of why he put this little ditty together. Thanks Josh for the tip...

Jim

Check it out HERE

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

the King of Kings and Michael Jackson

4"Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

5Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
6Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
7but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
9Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,to the glory of God the Father."

Philippians 2:4-11

I watched much of the Michael Jackson tribute service yesterday. Not because I'm a huge Michael Jackson fan... cause I'm not. I think that he was an "okay" artist. (I know some will disagree with me on that... go ahead if you want... you won't change my mind.) I think he was an "okay" celebrity (again... feel free to debate). I think he was a weird and twisted individual (again... feel free to argue... just know that if you are abusive, you will be deleted).

But I watched it more because our society claims that he was a major figure. Not just because of what they said but also because of how they treated his passing. (Honestly I'm getting tired of hearing about it in the news... so this will likely be my one and only post on the subject... mostly because I think we've spent too much time on it already.)

So I watched because I was interested in what was happening from the standpoint of keeping up with what is happening in our culture. And frankly, I was shocked by how much they idolized him with the things they said and how they acted. Was he a great artist? Debatable. Was he a great human being? Possibly... but again debatable. Was he God or a god? Absolutely not. I loved what Mark Driscoll twittered... "The cult-like status of MJs death is unreal. If someone transported in from ancient Israel they would have swore he was a god like Pharaoh." And there likely are some around the world today who think that he was a god.

I loved the perspective placed on the whole shenanigans by the minister at the very end (his name I didn't catch... but should I find out today, I will edit that in)... his comment was worth watching the whole deal... He said "and now the king of pop will have to bow his knee to the King of Kings." (see Revelation 17 and 19 if King of Kings doesn't mean anything to you.)

Michael Jackson isn't God. Only God is God. And now that Michael's life is done, he will have to stand before Him who judges the life and actions of all. My hope and prayer is that you bow your knee in submission here on earth before it's forced in the end.

Because every knee will bow... Eventually!

Jim


Edit: The name of the minister was Pastor Lucious Smith and HERE is a link to the video of his closing prayer.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Free Nooma #24 Preview


There is a free preview of the new Nooma video #24 (edit: Whirlwind) by Rob Bell. It's good today (7/7) and tomorrow (7/8).


It's HERE.


Enjoy!!


Jim

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Freedom!


Happy Birthday America.

I love living in this country. I love the freedom that we are able to enjoy. I hope that you spent a day relaxing and enjoying the freedom that our nation provides and the opportunities that we have here like no other place on the planet. I hope that you enjoyed a great fireworks display (like I did last night)!

But remember... Freedom isn't free. Millions of our country's bravest are protecting my ability to sit on my couch, watch the evening news and blog. I'm thankful for them. Two of my grandparents were in that group... having served our country. My uncle was in that group. I have countless friends in that group. I have several former students in that group (thanks Ashley, J.T. and Brandon and others).

But also remember... while this country does provide some great opportunities, true freedom is only found in one place: Jesus Christ. John 8:31 and 32 says: "Jesus said, "If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

True freedom is found in a relationship with Jesus Christ!!

Thank you America for a great nation. But thank you Jesus for truly setting me free!!

Jim

R.I.Pieces Glass Table


Rest In Pieces Glass Table... literally...

When Jackie and I moved to North Aurora about 9 months ago, we adopted this glass table from a neighbor who was giving it away.

It's a great table. And the metal matches the floor in the kitchen perfectly.

About 2 months ago, it developed (unknown how to us) a small crack. We watched it for about a week and it didn't really do too much. Then one day it grew. And then it grew again.

So we stopped sitting at that end of the table. This morning, the crack took another turn. And then it took another.

And then while we were eating brunch, a large chunk of it fell out and crashed (literally) to the floor. So I just spent (along with some great help from Todd) the last 4 hours cleaning that up, carrying the remainder of the table outside and breaking it up and getting the kitchen back in some semblance of order.

That really stinks that the table broke like that. I really liked that table.

Jim

Edit: Also taken in this tragedy was my MacBook's Bluetooth Mighty Mouse. It was resting on the section that broke away. It was injured initially and we were hoping that it would pull through. But alas, it didn't make it. (It was replaced tonight thanks to Best Buy being open on the 4th!)

Friday, July 03, 2009

Happy 4th of July - Homemade Fireworks (funny)

Jackie and I are heading out here shortly to hang with some friends for a 4th of July cookout and fireworks.

I just had to post this. This is pretty funny!! Obviously not a real video... cause the lights are on after the explosion. But still pretty funny!!!


Don't try that at home!

Jim

Check it out HERE

Free Francis Chan - Crazy Love


I tweeted about this yesterday.

I love free stuff. But I especially love free books. Now, I'm not crazy about audio books. But I'm willing to give it a shot for free.

So I was stoked to see that ChristianAudio.com is giving away a free copy of Francis Chan's book "Crazy Love." (Click HERE to check it out on Amazon.com.)

I love free stuff. And I love telling people about free stuff. So head on over to ChristianAudio.com, create an account (necessary to download) and then grab a free copy!!

Jim

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Runpee.com


This is a pretty cool and inventive little website that I stumbled onto with the help of Josh Griffin. It's called "runpee.com". Basically the whole idea is one of telling you when is it safe during the movie to go to the bathroom and exactly what you will miss if you do.

I'm planning to go and use it this afternoon at IMAX Transformers (again!!)!

Jim




Post Movie edit: The app is great. It gives great times to run out to the bathroom or to grab a soda. I didn't need to go during the movie, but all the times that they recommended would have been excellent times to go.

Download this app!! It's sweet!!

And thanks Runpee for the link (HERE)!!! Thanks for the props!!